8 Myths about Hiring Dog Walking Services

On the fence about whether to hire a professional dog walking service? These services are often misunderstood; people don't understand the qualifications of dog walkers, and they don't realize there's more to the job than just walking. Take a closer look, however, and hiring a dog walking service means much more than getting someone to follow your pooch with a plastic poop bag. A gifted dog walker will play with, feed, exercise, water, and watch not only your dog but the home in which your dog lives. For this reason, many people feel most comfortable with an insured and bonded dog walker. Read on to dispel eight common myths about dog walking services.

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MYTH: A professional dog walker cannot teach an old dog new tricks.

Despite the old bromide, canine companions do learn new tricks, and foster new relationships throughout their lives. A professional dog walker is entirely aware of a dog’s need for stimulation, play, and rest and will respond in an appropriate manner. It is therefore highly likely that not only can an old dog learn a new trick but that the dog will enjoy the process.

MYTH: A dog will be lonely without his master/mistress at home.

Yes, a pet will miss his or her human companion. Yet a dog entrusted to the care of a responsible, loving, fun dog walker will enjoy attention, exercise, treats, enthusiasm, and all the comforts of home.

MYTH: A dog walker may not be able to protect a dog in a canine pack from an alpha dog.

The alpha dog is pretty much a now debunked myth, based on discredited research involving wolves. Dogs, like any successful animal that enjoys pack behavior, have a variety of skills and behavioral instincts that will lead to playing well with others.

MYTH: All dog walkers are equal.

While anyone can walk with a dog, not everyone knows what do if a canine companion chokes on an object, undergoes an unexpected medical emergency, or is to be entrusted with the home in which the dog resides. The professional pet sitter is often insured, bonded, and has undergone classes for pet CPR and first aid certification. Many dog walkers are members of a professional pet sitting organization

MYTH: Dog walking is a career for people who are more comfortable sitting than standing.

There is a reason it is called dog walking and not dog sitting. Playing, guiding, feeding, nurturing, and having a fundamental understanding of animal behavior are all involved. None of the above descriptions lends itself to laziness.

MYTH: A professional dog walker should keep the leash to the left side and it should create a relaxed, loose connection with the dog.

This myth originated in AKC obedience competitions, which were based on hunting style requirements, with the assumption that a gun would be in the human’s right hand. The style and the attitude stuck. A dog walker taking a dog on a simple walk has no need to keep to one side or the other.

MYTH: Hiring a dog walking service is exorbitantly expensive.

A dog walking service is on par economically with boarding a dog. When factoring in the savings in effort in taking the dog to the boarding establishment, it can be argued that hiring a dog walking service is a savings in energy and in the need to acclimate the dog before and after boarding.

MYTH: People only need to hire a dog walking service when they’re going on holiday.

There are many reasons for hiring a dog walking service. There are times when due to work, school, social, medical or other obligations the responsible pet parent is simply unable to attend to the responsibilities that a dog entails, therefore hiring a professional service.